Senate Clears 1-Month HTF Extension for President’s Signature

At 1:30 p.m. today, the U.S. Senate held a special session lasting less than five minutes, during which the Senate passed legislation (H.R. 5434) providing a one-month extension of Highway Trust Fund spending authority. This clears the measure for President Biden’s signature, which will be speedily forthcoming and which will enable the 3,700 or so U.S. Department of Transportation employees who were furloughed on October 1 to return to work. It also provides that those employees will be paid retroactively for their furlough day.

The House passed the bill last night by a vote of 365 to 51 (easily clearing the two-thirds threshold required by the expedited procedure used by the House), but the Senate was unable to get unanimous consent to approve the House bill last night, with multiple GOP holds. (In fairness, the Senate was being asked to approve the legislation before there had been much chance to read the text.) By this afternoon, the holds had vanished, and the Senate was easily able to agree to Sen. Ron Wyden’s (D-OR) request to pass H.R. 5434 by unanimous consent, without debate.

See this article from yesterday for a section-by-section summary of H.R. 5434.

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